Letters to the Editor

Letters from March 9, 1999

Andrew Putz can be reached at [email protected].
Where Jumpsuits Go to Die

While I enjoyed Harvey Pekar's take on the Rock Hall [Music, March 2], I disagree on one small point. I travel fairly often, and the Rock Hall actually has helped give Cleveland a new national identity. Take that for what it's worth, but at least it beats the burning-river image.

Regarding Pekar's lack of visits to the Hall itself, I can assure him he's not missing anything. Maybe it's true that rock and roll will never die, but that doesn't mean it can't be eviscerated, embalmed, and put on display in a glass case.

Ron Rajecki


A Rock Travesty -- Like 'N Sync

I really loved the comic page "Why I Haven't Visited the Rock Hall," by Harvey Pekar and Gary Dumm. I thought I was alone in my feelings about the way Cleveland was duped into maintaining this rock and roll travesty. They hit the nail right on the head. Who needs it? I don't. When the bigwigs in N.Y. and L.A. dictate what/who/when goes in it, rather than THE PEOPLE who supported and make such stars, it's a sham. Their corporate stance is what killed rock and roll. The Hall just displays and confirms the souls they own. Thanks for putting my feelings down in such a manner. You rock, guyz!

Raven Slaughter

Guitar Horrorz

The Argument Against Fat Chicks

Laura Putre's article "Fat City" [February 24] does make some valid and interesting points, but deep down, as well as on the face of it, it is an exercise in female chauvinist piggism. Of the nine corpulent fatsos identified by name, eight are men. While it is true that there is no shortage of fat guys in Cleveland, they are greatly outnumbered by fat chicks. This is true of every age group, from grade school on up. I am appalled by the sight of grade-school girls who are already so obese that they must waddle with their feet 28 inches apart. Some are victims of bad parenting -- mostly mothers or grandmothers who are all too happy to allow the kids to vegetate in front of the tube and gorge themselves on candy and cookies, as long as it keeps them quiet. These children are taught obesity by their primary caregivers (more like careless givers, actually).

The gender gap in the flab department can be easily verified with one phone call to the Centers for Disease Control or a visit to any mall. Not only are females more likely to be obese, they are more likely to be morbidly obese -- they reach the point, at a young age, of having to wait seven minutes for the elevator to take them up one floor, instead of taking 70 seconds to walk up the stairs. They whine about sore, swollen ankles and feet, and bemoan the shortage of fashionable clothes. Men do have it easier in regard to clothing -- the standard suit or sport coat will hide a multitude of flaws, including a huge gut.

There may be a hereditary component, but it is difficult to separate it from learned behavior. Metabolic rate has nothing to do with it. Many studies have shown that the metabolic rate of fatsos and that of people of normal weight fall within the same range. The myth of metabolism was invented by the enormously profitable weight-loss industry, exemplified by the annoying and skanky Florine Mark of Weight Watchers, herself a former blubber-butt.

But after all is said and done, forget diet drugs, forget no-carbohydrate diets and Slim Fast, and concentrate on the one and only fact that you need to know -- if you do not eat it, it cannot make you fat.

Paul T. Janco


The World Needs a Big Fat Hug

I also believe that the problem Cleveland faces is the same across the country: We worry too much about the garbage and not enough about the real issues. I have a problem with all three of the response letters to the article "Fat City" [Letters, March 2], and my problems exist on many levels. In a perfect society, wouldn't we embrace people of all colors, genders, religious beliefs, heights, and weights, with no ramifications or judgments? Aren't these the very things that we should be teaching our children? To determine the worth of people by what's in their hearts and not by what color they are or how much they weigh? I think it's wrong to imply that an overweight person is somehow doing something "wrong" and should be punished for it.

There should be no comparison between being heavy and being a felon. My eating habits have no direct effect on you, any more than someone who doesn't bathe does. Mr. Marc Fatica obviously has no idea what it's like to be fat, to be picked on and called names. To be made to feel like you're less than you really are, just because you weigh more than the norm. To shop for clothes and have nothing look right, because they make everything to look good on thin people. To walk into one of those fast food restaurants and have everyone stare and whisper because you're getting fries instead of a salad. We have ears and eyes, and our feelings get hurt just like yours. Society doesn't cater to obese people; it makes us feel worthless.

On the flip side, I don't think it's right for heavy people to insult thin people. We all think, feel, and bleed the same. Just because I like chips and you like carrots doesn't make one of us wrong. We make choices every second of every day, and everyone in the world doesn't need to agree with those choices. To conclude, I would like to say this: A few days ago, a little boy walked into his school and shot and killed his classmate. Why should anyone worry about how much I weigh? They should be worried about whether my kid's going to take my gun to school for show and tell. Maybe if we all banded together, instead of always dividing, we could finally make a difference. I'd like to see us try.

Kristi Hlinka

via the Internet

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